NCCGA tips are meant to help teams organize and run more efficiently. I know that the club president's job can be very time demanding and difficult at times. Through my tenure as president of the University of Florida Club Golf Team, I have constantly attempted to find more effective ways to get the job done. I believe that managing a club golf team in a simple and efficient manner allows for a more enjoyable atmosphere for everyone within the club. These NCCGA Tips are based my own experiences as club president as well as a few other club presidents. I have outlined 8 ways that may be beneficial to your club.
1. Form Board/Council
If your team is very new to club golf and you are in the process of forming an exec/council, there are generally two methods most club golf teams structure their e-Board. One way is to have a president on top with multiple vice presidents for all of the major operations of the club, such as VP of Fundraising and VP of Public Relations. Under the vice president will be a committee which consists of a few members of the club. Generally, the members in the committee will work to become a vice president and then one of the vice presidents will become the president. The main downside of this organizational structure is the large amount of people it requires to be successful, anywhere from 13-31 people (1 president, about 4-6 vice presidents and then 3-5 people in the committee under each vice presidents). Most club golf teams do not have the numbers to adopt this structure. Instead, many utilize a basic organization structure that can be just as effective, but requires more diligence when it comes to a succession plan. Below are some of the most common positions found in a basic structure:
- President oversees and directs all operations, manages exec board, leads meetings/practices
- Vice President president’s right hand man, also oversees all operations of the club, prime candidate to be next president
- Treasurer manages club bank account, all cash flows and financial positions
- Public Relations maintains all social media accounts as well as community’s perspective on the club
- Fundraising Chair plans events to meet fundraising goal for the semester
- Secretary keeps record of attendance and meeting notes
- Institution Liaison communicates with and fills out paperwork for school (especially important position if receiving funding from the school)
- Social Chair plans events to unite the club off of the golf course
2. Exec/Council Communications
Communication is an integral part of being a leader of an organization. You should confer with your executive team when making any big decisions. This may be time consuming, but it helps ensure that multiple people are making a decision rather than just one person. Even at times when the decision seems obvious, team members often bring up a better ideas and play 'Devil's Advocate' to ensure that the best decision is being made. Since communications with you executives can be time sensitive, email is not always the best method of communication. The two apps that I have had the most success with are GroupMe and Facebook Messenger, simply because they are practical, most students already use them, and can garner responses quickly.
It is often important to quickly send out mass emails to the team regarding cancelled practice, tee-times for day two, fundraising updates, or other general information. one way to do this is by setting up a Listserv. In order to set-up your Listserv, it is essential that the president creates an email address dedicated specifically for the club golf team. It will make communication easier, but also ensure continuity for when the current president graduates. The typical format most teams across the nation follow is (schoolabbreviations)clubgolf@
4. Money Collection
Money collection is the most difficult process of a club golf team. It is important that all finances are collected and tracked diligently. From my experiences, the following steps helped to keep my club's finances more organized. Step 1: Open a bank account and get a debit/credit card. This was beneficial for us because it helped to keep records of all cash flow within the club, but also to keep everything in one, separate account. Step 2: collect as many forms of payment as possible to make it more convenient for your players. Most clubs already collect cash and checks for tournament and membership dues, however one tactic that surprisingly helped was being able to accept credit/debit cards. One way of doing this is to open a square account and link it to your club golf bank account. After receiving a square reader (which attaches to the aux input of your phone), most of my players preferred to pay with credit/debit card, despite the small additional fee. You can even set up a website online for your players to pay at their convenience. Checkout the University of Florida Club Golf Teams website for money collections here.
5. Scorecard Collection For Qualifiers
Holding tryouts or qualifiers are sometimes necessary to establish who is participating in the regionals. It is often the fairest way of figuring out who gets to play, but it often can get overwhelming. After talking with different club presidents, it was clear that most teams physically collect scorecards from each player after their qualifying round. This could get difficult, as some of the larger teams have 30-40 players qualify over a span of a few days. Instead of manually collecting scorecards from every group, one strategy that may simplify this process is to have the golfers send a picture of their signed scorecards to the club golf team email account as soon as they finish up on the 18th hole. This is much more efficient and will consume a lot less of everybody’s time.
Fundraising is key, especially since we are all in college. One method of fundraising is to create a fundraising form through the NCCGA. This can be accessed through the club president’s portal on the NCCGA’s website; See University of Colorado-Boulder's Page below. Your team will have their own personal URL where you can easily keep track of who has donated and how much more needs to be fundraised to meet your goal. Another fundraising tactic that has been beneficial to some club golf teams is to create an account with GoFundMe. Check out Saint Louis University Golf’s GoFundMe.
7. Social Media
Social media is a great tool for recruiting and to keep everybody connected and updated with what’s going on. A lot of clubs designate an entire executive position solely toward social media. Normally, this person manages the club golf’s Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts. He/she usually posts to re-affirm what was said in the listserv about an upcoming practices, to congratulate the team on winning a tournament, and any other news related to the club.
8. Groom Future Board Members
I believe it is extremely important to see who is interested in being on exec/council for the following years and start training them early. This is especially important for the president's position. Find out who is interested in running the club next year and show them exactly what the position entails. It will be much easier and efficient experience if the new candidate shadows the exec member for a month to learn the ropes of the NCCGA process rather than trying to teach him/her the entire position in a few hours. It also helps to introduce the incoming president to these NCCGA tips so that they can build off your prior success. It will make the transition easier in the long run.
**Brandon Harrold is the NCCGA President. He can be reached on Twitter @NCCGAPresident or via email President@NCCGA.org.